Thursday, May 22, 2014

New Version of the Find-A-Record Research Assistant

Today we released a new version of the Find-A-Record Research Assistant. It is now focused on finding specific research opportunities for you. It scans your tree in FamilySearch and tells you where work needs to be done. Our goal is to help beginners get started with their research and to help experienced genealogists when they don't know where to work next.

There are five different types of opportunities:

  1. People who are missing information, such as birth or death facts.
  2. People who are missing relationships, such as parents or spouses.
  3. People with information that is not supported by a record.
  4. People with information that is obviously wrong, such as dying before you were born.
  5. People with messy and duplicate data, such as multiple events for the same marriage.
Each opportunity contains specific details that guide you through the research. We tell you where to search for records and how to update information in the Family Tree.

While working on this new version, we often got sucked into doing research because the Research Assistant makes it so easy to be productive. We know it will be helpful for you too.


  1. This is wonderful. Thanks for bringing this concept to market, guys! Research Assistant simplifies a user's experience once they've engaged in family history, which is great. However, there's an opportunity this product seems to miss today that I'd love to see you fill.

    As one of 44,000 Family History Consultants, I'm always working to engage folks who have not yet engaged in family history. I do this by logging in to the Tree as their Helper to find the best opportunities on their Tree and notifying them of those. I actually search the records, find one that matches their family and would add more individuals, and serve that one opportunity to them during a home visit, giving them an incredibly simple victory as their first experience in family history. I'd like to be able to do this with Find-A-Record Research Assistant, but found that the Research Assistant pin disappears when I log in as a Helper. Is there any way you could make it work even when I'm helping someone else?

    1. We've never tried the Chrome extension in helper mode. I hope we can get it to work, but we won't know until we take a look. Thanks for letting us know. I'll be sure to tell you if we can fix it.

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